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Cystic Fibrosis Foundation Therapeutics Announces $58 Million CF Drug Discovery Agreement with Pfizer

November 19, 2012

Cystic Fibrosis Foundation Therapeutics Inc. (CFFT), the nonprofit drug discovery and development affiliate of the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, today announced a major expansion of its research collaboration with Pfizer Inc. designed to discover new drugs to treat people with the most common mutation of CF, Delta F508.

Under the new six-year pre-clinical research program with Pfizer, CFFT will invest up to $58 million to speed the discovery and development of potential therapies that target the underlying cause of cystic fibrosis.  The program’s goal is to advance one or more drug candidates into the clinic by the end of the multiyear collaboration.

“We are excited to expand our efforts with Pfizer to accelerate the development of more therapies that treat the root cause of CF and benefit the greatest number of people with the disease,” said Robert J. Beall, Ph.D., president and CEO of the CF Foundation. “Pfizer brings impressive technical and scientific expertise, along with its commitment to improving the lives of people with cystic fibrosis.”

The collaboration will focus on identifying therapies that help restore normal function of the defective protein CFTR, which does not fold correctly in people with the Delta F508 mutation. Nearly 90 percent of people with CF have at least one copy of the Delta F508 mutation. 

“We look forward to continued collaboration with the CF Foundation and to applying our leading science with the goal of identifying novel therapies for the treatment of this devastating disease,” said Jose-Carlos Gutierrez-Ramos, senior vice president of Pfizer BioTherapeutics R&D.

This new agreement builds on CFFT’s existing collaboration with Pfizer, which began in 2010 when Pfizer acquired the biotech company FoldRx Pharmaceuticals Inc., as part of the company's expanded effort to discover and develop innovative medicines for rare diseases. The acquisition included FoldRx’s CF research program in collaboration with CFFT which started in 2007.

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